Thursday, October 29, 2009

Day 6- Granada

Ok, let me finish up our last two days in Spain before I forget everything we saw.

We woke up early & drove to Granada. As we climbed up the mountains, the country became more green. We went directly to Alhambra & followed the signs for parking. You have to pre-purchase your tickets to see the Palacios Nazaries portion of Alhambra. In hindsight, we should have purchased tickets earlier in the day. Though, it's always hard to know how much buffer time to build into the travel.

We arrived around 10 am & explored the Generalife Gardens. They were gorgeous.
More Water

We also enjoyed beautiful views from the gardens.

We then started walking trying to find lunch for Cecilia. It wasn't easy. We should have packed sandwiches. We ended up at the beautiful Paradores hotel, but it was much too early for lunch in Spain & it took forever to get expensive ham & cheese sandwiches.


We slowly made our way toward the palace for our 1:30 ticket time. It took about an hour to walk through the palace. It was an interesting experience.

Rick Steeves' book was a great resource for historical references & palace details. For example, Columbus pitched the King & Queen in these rooms.

Granada means "pomegranate", but we didn't get a chance to pluck & eat any.

After Alhambra, we drove into town & parked. We wandered around by the Cathedral - an area with a lot of Moorish influence.

After an unfortunate miscalculation of time & erratic walking every which way, we decided to have a light snack.

Light Snack

All this food for only 10 euros! The meal was topped off with a glass of Moscatel - which was fruity & sweet.

Cecilia & I made the very wise decision to visit the Arab Baths. We originally made reservations for 4, but the boys chickened out. We HIGHLY recommend this - especially if you've been walking like crazy all week.

After the massage & soak in 9 different pools of varying temperature, we took a taxi up to Mirador de San Nicolas - one of the most romantic views in Spain.
Alhambra at Dusk

In the summer, I think the sun sets over the palace. We chose to have dinner at Estrellas de San Nicolas after seeing this blog post.

It was too cold to eat outside, but we still enjoyed a lovely meal by a French chef (though surprisingly, the creme brulee wasn't that impressive).
Espresso & Clam Shots

What we bought in Granada = saffron.
What we would do with more time - the rest of my group didn't want more time here. They thought the homeless youth at Plaza Neuva & ubiquitous graffiti spoiled the town. I would have spent the night & walked the town early in the morning. I am convinced there are other beautiful parts of the town I missed. There is only so much one can see in a day. Plus, all the American exchange students we met at the Arab Baths talked up quite a few hot night spots (Poe & The Futbol Cafe).

You can see all the Granada photos HERE.

1 comment:

Monica said...

These pictures are so gorgeous. You have a great eye. Thanks for sharing your stories and photos.